Recipe courtesy of Traveler's Table

Caribbean Braised Oxtail With Mango Chow

Getting reviews...
  • Level: Advanced
  • Total: 7 hr 55 min (includes sit time)
  • Active: 1 hr 45 min
  • Yield: 3 servings


Jamaican Curry Rub:


Caribbean Bouquet Garni:

Braised Oxtails:

Caribbean Braised Oxtail:

Mango Chow:


Special equipment:
a 12-by-16-inch piece cheesecloth; butcher's twine
  1. For the Jamaican curry rub: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Place whole coriander, allspice, anise, cumin, fenugreek, mustard and peppercorns on a sheet tray evenly spread out. Bake 3 to 5 minutes. Place the ingredients in a spice grinder or blender and grind to a fine consistency, 2 to 3 minutes. Mix in a bowl with the turmeric and store in an airtight container for later.
  3. For the oxtails: Combine the flour and smoked paprika in a large bowl and set aside for later. Remove 2 ounces of the dredge and set aside for thickening the sauce.
  4. Combine the salt, pepper and 1/2 ounce curry rub in a bowl and mix well. Place the oxtails in a large bowl. Sprinkle the oxtails with all of the seasoning. (The oxtails should be coated heavily.)
  5. Dredge each oxtail in the flour dredge, then shake any excess flour off. Place on a sheet tray and let sit 2 to 4 hours.
  6. For the Caribbean bouquet garni: Unfold a 12-by-16-inch piece cheesecloth completely so that its length is perpendicular to your waist. Place the thyme, bay leaves and chiles at the bottom of the cloth and roll up, folding the outside of the cloth in to close the ends. Wrap up until it is tight, then and tie off with the butcher's twine, leaving the string long so it can be tied to the pot.
  7. For the braised oxtails: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  8. Combine the garlic, carrots, celery and onion in a container. In a large rondeau, heat up the oil to its smoke point, 2 to 3 minutes. Sear the oxtails until bronzed on each side, then remove from the oil. Reduce heat if pan is smoking too hard, then add the diced vegetables and saute until they are translucent. Add the salt, allspice, paprika, pepper and 1/4 cup curry rub and continue to saute to toast the spices, 3 to 5 minutes. Add reserved flour dredge and mix well to incorporate, stirring for an additional 2 to 3 minutes. (This will help thicken the sauce as it braises.)
  9. Deglaze the pan with the sherry and bring up to a simmer. Add the chicken stock, tomato paste and oxtails and bring up to a boil. Tie the bouquet garni to the side of the pan and cover tightly with parchment and foil. Bake 1 1/2 hours, then add beans, recover, and continue to cook, stirring occasionally to prevent the beans from sticking, until oxtails are fork-tender, 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours more.
  10. For the Caribbean braised oxtail: Place 12 ounces hot oxtails in a saucepan with 2 cups sauce on medium heat. When the pan starts to boil, add the butter and cilantro. Baste each piece of oxtail 5 to 6 times with a spoon and turn off the heat.
  11. Mount all the rice to one side of a deep bowl and place the oxtails on top for height. Place the sauce on the other side of the bowl. Place Mango Chow on top and garnish with the cilantro sprigs, followed by 4 rings shaved chiles.

Mango Chow:

Yield: 1 quart
  1. Combine garlic, mangos, lime juice, chiles, cilantro, salt and pepper in a bowl. Mix well and adjust seasoning as needed.

Cook’s Note

I like to give a large, medium and few small pieces of oxtail when I portion. That should equal around 12 ounces in total weight. If they are cold, they heat up nicely in the microwave, 5 to 6 minutes on high with the sauce, and then return to the saute pan to finish with the butter, cilantro, carrots etc. It is okay to add a little chicken stock or water to the pan if your sauce is getting too thick.